Wednesday, October 29, 2008

Reading Lolita in Tehran

Reading Lolita in Tehran... the book I've recently discovered while browsing through the non-fiction area. it's about a teacher in the Islamic Republic of Iran who every thursday gathers with 7 of her most committed female students to read forbidden Western classics. It's interesting their view of America, sometimes positive, mostly not. But it's even more intriguing how they escape from the horrors and sadness of their life into these fiction books, stories of The Great Gatsby and Pride and Prejudice, Daisy Miller... But I really like is so far, so here are some quotes from the book that stuck out to me.

"He is a hero because he refuses to become like all the rest."

"She was her own definition."

"Do not, under any circumstance, belittle a work of fiction by trying to turn it into a carbon copy of real life; what we search for in fiction is not so much reality but the epiphany of truth."

"We in ancient countries have our past- we obsess over the past. They, the Americans, have a dream: they feel nostalgia about the promise of the future."

"This is how you read a novel: you inhale the experience. So start breathing."

"Empathy lies at the heart of Gatsby- the biggest sin is to be blind to others problems and pains. Not seeing them means denying their existence."

"Whoever fights monsters, should see to it that in the process he does not become a monster."

"Feel, Feel I say- feel for all you're worth, and even if it half kills you, for that is the only way to live- and the only way to honour and celebrate these admirable beings, who are our pride and inspiration." - Henry James

"Greatest freedom of man was his 'independence of thought.'"

Sunday, October 26, 2008


Probably one of my favorite parts in choir is getting new music. And for Christmas, we are getting loaded!! with music! Christmas music which is the best. So it was a grand day when we went through five new peices in chamber. So far we have 12 songs in there, but we're getting four more... and we have four in acapella. Here's my chamber songs, mostly for Heather so she can see what we're singing!
Shepherd's Pipe Carol
Rejoice and Sing Noel!
Go Tell it on the Mountain
There is no Rose of Such Virtue
The Twelve Days After Christmas
In Dulci Jubilo
Wexford Carol
Christmas Time is Here

and then these last four are ones we are singing in January with other chamber choirs and we're being directed by Craig Jessop!
Let the People Praise Thee, O God
Linden Lea
Psalm 148

So, alot of music to tackle, but i love it.

Saturday, October 18, 2008

Italy and the city of Venice

Day 13 in my tour to Europe is Venice. The city has fewer than 70,000 citizens, but is visited by more than 30,000 per summer day. It conists of 17 islands which have 150 canals between them, and some 400 bridges. It's from this city that Marco Polo journeyed to the Far East. Other famous residents included the painters Titian, Veronese, and Tintoretto.
Other inspirations in the arts was Gabrieli (two of them) who introduced the idea of 'antiphonal' music in the St. Mark's Basilica. On our tour i'll be able to walk past the church where Vivaldi was baptized.

Some things they told me to learn about are...
San Marco Basilica
Bridge of Sighs (which recieved it's name in the 17th century, because the prioners who passed through it on their way to prison cells on teh other side would most likely see the beautiful sight of the lagoon and the island of S. Giorgio and freedom for the last time... definately a bridege of sighs)
Piazza San Marco
Bell Tower
Doges Palace
Glass Blowers

They also gave me some websites to check out.. so if your curious, here they are. (interesting history secion) (examples of handmade Venetian Glass)

for venice photos....

Something i was searching that i thought was so cool, is The Carnival. It's one of the oldest internationall know festival celebrated in Venice. It began in the 15th century, but the tradition can be traced back to the 14th century. The Carnival starts around 2 weeks before Ash Wednesday and ends on Shrove Tuesday(Fat Tuesday or Mardi Gras), the day before Ash Wednesday. The streets are full of people completely dressed out, masks of course included.

I wish i could go but it doesn't take place while we're there, plus it's so costly most locals can't afford to attend.

Thursday, October 9, 2008


So, sitting at the dinner table, newspaper in hand... I come across this small little article off to the side that really just is pathetic and made me laugh at the same time.

National Debt Clock runs out of digits...

New York- In a sign of the times, the National Debt Clock in New York City has run out of digits to record the growing figure.
As a short-term fix, the digital dollar sign on the billboard-style clock near Times Square has been switched to a figure- the "1" in $10 trillion. It's marking the federal government's current debt at about $10.2 trillion.
The Durst Organization says it plans to update the sign next year by adding two digits. That will make it capable of tracking debt up to a quadrillion dollars.
The late Manhattan real estate developer Seymour Durst put the sign up in 1989 to call attention to what was then a $2.7 trillion debt.

Now if this just isn't ridiculous... we are apparently expected to rack up this debt to a QUADRILLION DOLLARS!! That's pathetic. It only took us 19 years to sink 7.5 trillion dollars more into debt. How are we not making anything to help drop this number instead of it skyrocketing up. Oh that's right, we get everything from China. Good one nation. Let's put all of our dependence in other nations that want to overtake us. Very strategic. Hey but good news... gas prices have dropped around 30 cents in I think 4 weeks!! That was a definite happy day for me.

Wednesday, October 8, 2008

Tuesdays with Morrie

For my CNA class, we have to do 24 hours of clinical work. And all of mine are at a long term care facility. And, i really don't know why, but uhhh the old people, sometimes I'd just rather not. No offense meant please to grandparents. I love you :D but the ones i dint know, that seem crazy and need help with things I'm not sure i want to do... makes me nervous.

We watched Tuesdays with Morrie in my CNA class today and it really got to me. I've been so selfish in my thoughts, I've overlooked that they're people that have lived a glorious life. So seeing this old, frail man with all his wisdom, who yeah he couldn't walk anymore, his hands shook and it embarrassed him, he changed my sight. It's so important when working in a hospital or LTC to realize that you're working with someone who probably doesn't want your help but they know they need it. They weren't put in there for fun, and it's definitely not fun being there. So when you put your heart out there, i believe they can teach you and help you, as much as you can help them.

Now, this doesn't change the fact that I am sooo nervous! to go work an 8 hour shift in a LTC. The people there will only be thinking that I'm another nurse whose certified and is just working, when i actuality I'm just a student. Which definitely puts some pressure on my shoulders. But it'll be such a good learning experience for me.

Thursday, October 2, 2008

The Fall

New Favorite Movie
Incorrectily rated
Filmed in over 28 countries
The most gorgeous cinematography i've ever seen
Most adorable little girl, with the cutest accent
Script practically written by the 5 year old
Elaborate Costumes
Crazy Imagination
Sweet mask
A movie filmed for the story, not money
"World of magic and myth"
Nobody was willing to finance.. so he sold everything but his house
Every place is real, they exist